IT IS A TWO-WAY STREET
If you have read many of my recent articles, you will have noticed my interest in Jack, my grandson. Actually, between him and politics, that is all I care about. I care for my grandson, and I care for politics to allow me to teach my classes better.
Back to Jack... Nearly a year ago, Jack came into my life. He is the first child of Lindsay and Jason. Lindsay is an adopted daughter of my wife, Ann. When my wife, Ann, adopted Lindsay, I wasn't married to Ann. However, in the passage of time, Ann and I got married both having had unhappy previous marriages. We have been happily married for over a decade.
After getting married three years ago, Lindsay got pregnant. On July 7, 2010, the baby started to move around inside of her. Lindsay called us to say that she was going to the hospital, and off we went to Indy and got there a couple hours before she delivered. While waiting, we decided to go to the restaurant in the hospital for a small breakfast and then went right back to see how she was doing with labor pains. We weren't gone 45-minutes, but it was enough time to Lindsay to deliver her first baby. Jack got cleaned up and was given to her. Then Jason got the baby and held it for awhile. It wasn't long before Ann got to hold her first grandchild.
Finally, I was given Jack to hold. I love kids and was happy to hold that newborn, even though genetically or legally, I wasn't directly tied to him. That naïve notion that I wasn't really a part of his family tree was quickly dispelled. I had held Jack for less than three nanoseconds, and he was adopted into my family tree. Jack was my grandchild. Period.
After a couple days in the hospital, Jason brought Lindsay and Jack home to his new bedroom and home in Indy. Ann and I began weekly trips to Indy usually Monday evening to babysit for him on Tuesday while Lindsay was working. Then on Tuesday evening, we would return to our home in Crown Point. We have done that trip each week since his coming into the world. It is a hoot to care for and love him. We have watched him grow weekly for nearly an entire year.
When he was about nine months old, I gave him some finger food while Ann was preparing his lunch. Jack and I were just talking while he intermittingly indulged in his finger food appetizer. Why I did the following isn't known, but I told him that I was hungry. I opened my mouth, and he looked concerned with the question written all over his face, is my papa in need of food? Then he looked at his highchair tray, picked up one of his treats, and gave it to me.
I was surprised and amazed at the same time. I told Ann to get the camera, and I asked him for another treat. Look at that picture below. See the intenseness of his concern. As I marveled over his sharing with me at nine months, however, what got to me was how he was adopting me into his family by sharing his food with me.
Adoption is a two-way street. It took me 68-long years to learn that critically important lesson of life. Jack was telling me that we were in the boat of life together. If I needed something that he had, he'd share it with me. I have always assumed that sharing was really only understood in the context of an adult giving to a child or adults with each other. Jack knew at nine months the urge to share thus tying me to his family by adopting me. Thanks, Jack. You have made my day and my life….